Lawton Man Convicted of Aggravated Fentanyl Trafficking, Eluding Police: Split Decision Reached in County Jury Trial

LAWTON, Okla. — A Lawton man has been convicted of aggravated trafficking in fentanyl and endangering others while eluding police in Comanche County. The jury delivered a mixed verdict on Tuesday following a two-day trial in Judge Jay Walker’s courtroom.

Ty Dontrell Howard, 27, was found guilty of the felony charges of aggravated trafficking in fentanyl and endangering others while eluding/attempting to elude police. However, he was acquitted of trafficking in methamphetamine and a misdemeanor count of failure to stop at a red light.

Earlier felony charges of child endangerment by permitting the presence of drug manufacturing and maintaining a place for keeping/selling drugs were amended and removed by the district attorney’s office.

According to investigators, Howard had taken several containers of suspected drugs from a residence on SW D Street in April 2023 before fleeing in his vehicle. During a subsequent high-speed chase initiated by an Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper, Howard eluded law enforcement.

A search of Howard’s car led to the discovery of 8.68 pounds of marijuana in the trunk, as well as 6,306 fentanyl pills, 338.5 grams of methamphetamine, and 22.5 grams of ecstasy/MDMA powder in a bag in the backseat.

The jury has recommended a 10-year prison sentence for the trafficking count and a five-year sentence for the eluding count. Judge Walker confirmed the recommendation during the formal sentencing.

This case highlights the ongoing battle against drug trafficking in the Lawton area. Law enforcement agencies are working diligently to combat the distribution of dangerous substances, such as fentanyl and methamphetamine, which pose a significant threat to public health and safety.

It is crucial for communities to stay vigilant and report any suspicious activities to local authorities. Through collaborative efforts, we can strive to make our neighborhoods safer and protect vulnerable individuals from the devastating consequences of drug abuse.

The successful prosecution of Howard sends a strong message that drug-related offenses will not be tolerated. By holding individuals accountable for their actions, we can deter others from engaging in illicit drug trafficking and potentially save lives. The sentencing of Howard serves as a reminder that justice will prevail in the fight against the drug epidemic.